Newspaper columnist George Matthew Adams was the son of a Baptist minister, George Matthew Adams, and his wife Lydia Havens. He was raised in Michigan and graduated in 1901 from Ottowa University in Kansas. Settling in Chicago, Adams worked as an elevator operator, rented equipment on credit, and established his newspaper syndicate, which he moved to New York in 1916. Adams married Harriet Isabel Breese on 3 June 1905; the couple had twin boys, George Matthew Adams, Jr., and Leland B. Adams. Harriet died in 1931 and Adams remarried in 1933, to Mrs. Robert Scott Harner, a Philadelphia artist. Adams was best known for his daily essays entitled, "Today's Talk." His notable collection of prints and books, as well as select paintings, was donated to the Dartmouth College Library, the Yale University Library, the University of Michigan, the Tuskegee Institute, and the National Gallery of Art.